In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, local legislation and guidelines around social distancing and other safety precautions mean the winter holidays will feel a little different this year.
After nearly a year of uncertainty, many people are eager to experience some of the familiar, uplifting aspects of the season, including the classic cakes, cookies and other baked goods that have been part of their holiday celebrations for years.
Manderfield’s Home Bakery, which has three Wisconsin locations, offers butter cookies, German stollen and other popular holiday items. This year, the bakery has taken the necessary safety precautions amid COVID, but it’s still going to decorate its space with the usual giant snowflakes, play Christmas music and include other ambiance elements that help attract customers, according to Doug Manderfield, who’s in charge of public relations and marketing for the bakery.
“People will still want their comfort foods,” Manderfield says. “We follow all the safety precautions that have been suggested by the CDC; that's behind the scenes. I want the bakery to feel like a place that’s as normal and happy as possible throughout the holidays.”
Ambiance is just one element that can enhance the holiday experience. Whether bakeries sell specialties like Christmas cookie cups, Rosca de Reyes, gingerbread donuts or other holiday desserts, they can evoke fond memories for customers—and see the peak sales they typically expect this time of year—in the following ways.
Highlight Baked Goods' Origins
Add a Twist to Seasonal Limited-Time Offerings
Offer Single-Serve Bakery Items
“People really like cute novelty things like cake pops —and there are a lot of different things you can do with [them],” Manderfield says. “We’ve made little Rice Krispies [treats] on sticks in different Christmas shapes dipped in chocolate. They’re individually packaged."
Honor Home Baking Traditions
Help Augment At-Home Celebrations
Although holiday parties and gatherings won’t happen at the same scale as they have in years past, Designer Desserts still plans to make and promote many of the themed offerings it has previously sold for these events, according to General Manager Vanessa Ryan. Customers seem to still be having celebrations, she says; they’re just smaller.
“For New Year’s Eve, a lot of people [used to] go out to restaurants or other venues,” Ryan says. “I think there will be more at-home parties so people will probably buy a little more [than usual for their families].”
Though the pandemic has placed a major strain on bakeries, this holiday season presents a significant sales opportunity for those that can help consumers find comfort, celebrate traditions and make the season extra special with delicious desserts.
From sophisticated Cranberry Bundt Cake to show-stopping New Year's Eve Cupcakes, discover Dawn's wide range of recipes to inspire your bakery menu this holiday season HERE.